“My mother-in-law loves garage sales and thrifting. One summer, she was on a mission to find little girl dresses to sell in her shop. I stopped by her house one afternoon to hang out and see all the goodies she’d been finding. She started to show me a bunch of little girls dresses she found and one of them caught my eye. A colorful tie-dyed lace dress with an aqua blue ribbon.
I don’t know why, but this dress spoke to me. I told her to hold onto that dress for me because one day, I’ll have a daughter and she’s going to wear it. Now I didn’t actually know I was going to have a daughter one day. At this point, I was not having any more natural births, and the only way to have a daughter was through adoption.
Fast forward 3 years to December 31, 2019. My husband was in the guest room taking a nap, I was on the computer probably shopping on Amazon like I usually do and the phone rang. ‘Hi, is this Desiree? We are calling because we have a birth mom who just gave birth to a baby girl and she has chosen your family to adopt her baby.’
Now before I go any further let me give you a little backstory. My husband and I met in college and got married a week after graduation. We always talked about adopting one day because my husband was adopted into a wonderful family. We believe in passing blessings forward so we both agreed one day, we would adopt. We just didn’t know when.
After having a rough pregnancy and post-pregnancy with my son, I knew I didn’t want to get pregnant again anytime soon. As the years went by, I realized pregnancy wasn’t for me and if we wanted another kid, we needed to adopt soon. My son at this point was 4 years old and we didn’t want our kids to be too far apart in age. In August of 2019, we began contacting different agencies. We didn’t know which route we wanted to take for adoption: fostering with the hopes of adopting, state adoption, private or international adoption. . . the choices were endless. After numerous phone calls, it became clear we needed to go through a private adoption agency. We did what any modern-day couple would do, and we googled adoption agencies.
We filled out an online application and by the next day, we received a welcoming phone call laying out everything we could possibly need to know. We felt such a calm and peace about everything so we decided to move forward in the adoption process. One part of the adoption process was to list our preferences. This allows the agency to only show our profile to birth moms that match our preferences. We had listed any race and any gender up to 2 years old. After everything was complete, it was time to wait. Literally one of the hardest parts of this whole journey. We did what we could to keep ourselves occupied. We made a hospital bag in case we had a last-minute call, we listened to webinars to prepare ourselves for the next steps in our journey, completed house projects because we knew once we had a baby that would be difficult to complete. And yet still, the waiting was hard.
Then one day, we got a phone call saying a birth mom with twins was interested in us. We didn’t list twins on our preferences so normally we wouldn’t even have received a phone call but this birth mom was persistent about us. I have to be honest, that made us feel so honored and special someone would seek us out that much. We agreed to talk with her. And then… silence. We never heard from her, our agency didn’t hear from her. It was like she vanished. Our hearts were crushed. We had gotten our hopes up. Planning, dreaming, thinking of everything we would need to do, and it led nowhere.
Then a week later, we received another phone call. This would be THE phone call we’ve been waiting for. It wasn’t for twins but instead, a birth mom who just had a baby girl and we had been chosen to take her home.
My husband was taking a nap in the other room. After I got off the phone, I barged in with a huge grin on my face. Startled, my husband asked, ‘What is going on?’ I told him, ‘We have a baby!’ He immediately jumped up and asked for all the details. Luckily, our birth mom was only about 1.5 hours away so we packed our bags and headed to the hospital. The adoption agency gave me her phone number and I immediately texted her saying we were on our way and asked if she needed anything. The only thing she asked for was a strawberry milkshake and of course, we made that happen.
On our way to the hospital, when I had a moment to breathe and reflect, I realized I had no idea what I was going to say to her. I started to freak out a little inside… like this is going to be so awkward. I never met her, never had a conversation with her, yet here I am about to take her baby home.
We arrived at the hospital and she was in the room all by herself. No friends, no family. It broke my heart. We began to talk to her and get to know her before even asking about the baby. We had an immediate connection and felt like we had known her for a while. Then she handed me her baby girl, now my baby girl, and as cliche, as it sounds, it was worth the wait.
It was time to take our baby girl home. This was the hardest part of our entire adoption. It was clear from our conversations and so many other things that our birth mom loved and cared for her daughter deeply. So much so, she knew adoption was the best opportunity for her baby to have the best life possible. She began to cry as she kissed her on the forehead, whispering how much she loves her. I couldn’t help but cry with her. The selfless love she displayed that day is something I strive for every day.
We got the all-clear from the hospital, said our goodbyes, and went home. At first, I was hesitant about open adoption, and a little insecure at the idea of the birth mom having access to my child. But as I began to learn and open my mind, I realized open adoption is the best thing possible for my child and for me. After leaving the hospital, I stayed in contact with our birth mom. I told her whenever she was ready, I would send videos and pictures and about 2 weeks later, she reached out. Ever since then, we text regularly. I send her pictures and videos every month, and she sends gifts for the baby. I ask for her input on certain things, check in with her, and was able to learn about her family history and habits that help me better understand our baby girl. We have a special bond and I’m so grateful for it!
We finished all of our post-placement visits and were ready to finalize everything back in April of 2020 and then, Covid-19 happened. All the courts closed and our adoption hearing was postponed. It wasn’t until our daughter was 7 months old we were able to finalize everything through a zoom call. I was a little upset it took so long but then I realized something special. Remember that colorful tie-dyed lace dress with the aqua blue ribbon I fell in love with 3 years ago? Well, our daughter got to wear that dress on her adoption day! Little did I know, those words I spoke over my life would actually come true.
My story doesn’t have any huge lows or crazy mishaps but what my story has taught me is there is hope in a sometimes hopeless world. There is such a thing as unconditional love, dreams really do come true, and the words you speak over your life have power so choose them wisely.”
This story was submitted to Love What Matters by Des Board from Florida. You can follow their journey on Instagram and their website. Do you have a similar experience? We’d like to hear your important journey. Submit your own story here. Be sure to subscribe to our free email newsletter for our best stories, and YouTube for our best videos.
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‘The family stopped answering. ‘They’ve backed out of the adoption.’ They wanted a healthy baby, not my son with a disability.’: Mom of 5 adopts special needs child after rejections, now in beautiful open adoption with birth mom
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